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Geotechnical Engineering

Bachelors of Engineering (Honours) / Science

Understanding and predicting the behaviour of soil and rock as earth materials is imperative for creating safe, sustainable and economical civil engineering solutions.

Geotechnical engineers apply scientific principles and engineering methods for developing civil engineering infrastructure on the surface and within the ground including prediction, mitigation and prevention of geological hazards.

The major in geotechnical engineering is unique in Australia and designed to meet the demands of mining companies, geotechnical consultations and construction managers, who look for graduates with a qualification in geotechnical engineering.

The courses offered as part of this major will extend fundamental knowledge of the geotechnics of soils and rock to explore more complex processes, such as those associated with tunnels, mining operations, dams, roads, underground structures and waste management facilities.

State-of-the-art teaching and laboratory facilities combined with world-leading lectures and strong industry engagement will provide graduates of this major with a strong foundation from which they can contribute immediately to geotechnical engineering projects in industry.


To study this major, you'll have to choose an engineering specialisation first. The geotechnical engineering major is available to study within the civil engineering specialisation.


1 in Queensland for civil and structural engineering

QS World University Rankings 2024

4 in the world for mineral and mining engineering

QS World University Rankings 2024

Watch Geotechnical - Civil Engineering on YouTube.

Career possibilities

Our programs prepare you for your first job and beyond. Here are some of the careers you could be on your way to:

  • Project engineer
  • Geotechnical engineer

Average annual salary range

Geotechnical Engineer


How you'll learn

Your learning experiences are designed to best suit the learning outcomes of the courses you choose.

  • Lectures
  • Tutorials
  • Work placements
  • Overseas study
  • Laboratory work
  • Fieldwork
  • Workshops

What you'll study

At UQ, subjects are called 'courses'. Here's a sample of the courses you could study:

  • Rock Mechanics
  • Advanced Soil Mechanics
  • Geotechnical Investigations
  • Advanced Rock Mechanics

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